Friday, June 6, 2008

A "Fair Warning" To Hobbit Fans

Check out this post that GDT made over at the TORN message boards:

To LOTR fans on Hellboy 2 As the opening of "Hellboy II: The Golden Army" draws near I feel the urge to reiterate a fair warning. The Aesthetics of the film are quite "Pop" and colorful and -obviously- more influenced by the hyper-saturated palette of a Kirby comic book than a Fairy Tale or a Fantasy work.

Please do not get confused by either the palette of the film or its tone. It uses the comedic and interpersonal banter from the first film and the monster design is quite outlandish and colorful. We made a deliberate move away from the Celtic / Nordic aesthetics present in most Fantasy films because we knew we could NOT out do bigger productions (like LOTR) at that game.

We are a $85 m dollar film and we tried to find our own "look" so we endeavoured to create a very idiosyncratic melange of Arabic architecture and design and Oriental motifs. We took Japanese suit of armour patterns allowed it to be imbued by Celtic motifs, etc- you can see some of that in the trailer.

Our Elfland is more akin to Dunsany or perhaps even Moorcock in its aesthetics, using the stark contrast of dark against white skin and golden eyes.

Our magical world is broader and freer -even surreal at times- and suits the tone of this film.

I am exceedingly aware of Genres and moreso when I mix them and / or mix them together. Most of Hellboy will give you almost no indication of what will come to pass with the HOBBIT. There is, however a PROLOGUE done with Old Wooden Puppets that will share some faint traces that eventually you will be able to find in certain passages in the forthcoming movie. But even then, please do not take this as a verbatim through line.

When I started HBII I had NO inkling that the HOBBIT would really come my way and I wanted to use the Fantasy Worlds that lie beneath as a metaphor of all that mankind is extinguishing with its unedning greed.

It is my dearest hope that this message will prevent speculation of what in "Pan's Labyrinth" or "Hellboy II" will indicate what the HOBBIT will be. In time there will be definite aesthetic choices that will guide the film towards a yuxtaposition of PJ's and my visual proclivities but I think it will only be visible in retrospect and it would be almost impossible -and rather perverse- to try and divine it at this stage.

The same goes for tone and theme. Nevertheless, if some
of you enjoyed the first :Hellboy" or "Pan's Labyrinth" for that matter I would
love to have you grace a theater with your derriere and allow our tale to find

All the Best


I get from this post that GDT is well aware of the ever-observing eye of "Hobbit Nation". No doubt he will be under a measure of fan-scrutiny he has never experienced before. Hellboy has its loyal followers, but not in the large numbers represented by Tolkien's fans. This is what we call a "pre-emptive strike" - answering the question before it is asked.

So don't fret "Hobbit Nation", your beloved story is in good hands. I'm sure most of you are well aware of that already.


Anonymous said...

I think it's courageous and considerate of Del Toro to provide us with this insight on the future aesthetics of the Hobbit. Most directors wouldn't have done such a kind jesture. Thanks GDT and you bet my butt will be at the openging night of Hellboy!

E. Kubinek said...


I never really venture so far into the nerd herd as to check out the LOTR sites (mostly cause I don't care), but people must be RABID if GDT is already posting a notice like this.

Has conceptual design even begun yet for the Hobbit?

Parker said...

No concept design - other than GDT's sketches in his famous notebook, I'm sure.

This message is very considerate of him. GDT knows how much this movie means to Hobbit fans, and he definitely wants to "get off on the right foot" and ease any trepidation with Hobbit fans everywhere.

Anonymous said...

Let's not be too gushing. As much as I like PJ for example, I was aghast at glaring holes in ROTK - after the utterly magnificent(!!) TTT - and excellent FOTR. For me each major plot turn from the book mucked up the works, progressively. So much attention was given to first two films in contrast with the third IMO. I'm satisfied though with the selection of director, even though I am NOT a fan of Hellboy. Seem like a splendid chap. Glad this one is in the works. Like others I'm sure, I'm thinking positive. :)